Unist products have had some great results throughout the industry. Don't take our word for it . . . here's what some of our customers have to say:
Previous to 1996 Dietrich Industries was using a number of lubrication devices on their roll forming lines. Since then we have standardized on the Unist system, primarily due to the fact that they are much more efficient in the application of lubricant. We have less run out of lubricant on the finished product and no over spray similar to the spray units that we had used in the past, providing our locations with a much cleaner environment. In addition to reducing the overall cost of lubricant we have eliminated the need for compressed air blow off nozzles on our equipment, thus reducing the cost of electrical power and reduction of noise in all of our 28 locations across the USA. We are also satisfied that the product is being metered and distributed properly to the forming rolls to reduce friction, thus prolonging the life of our tooling. In the lubrication of flat coil stock previous to the forming operation, I can truly say that we picked the right lubrication system for our equipment.- Randall A. Torok, Director of Purchasing: Dietrich Industries, Inc.
The biggest benefit from the roller coater (Uni-Roller® S2), compared to our spray systems on the other presses is the ability to apply lubricant evenly on the bottom as well as the top of the material. With the spray systems, to ensure consistent coverage across the entire sheet often requires overspraying. And, even then, we’re not always able to adequately coat the outer edges of the tooling with lube, where the stock may be dry and cause premature tool wear. The roller coater performs exceptionally well, precisely, and with great repeatability - coating the top and bottom of the 17.6-in.-wide coil stock. In addition, we can customize the location and thickness of the lubricant, based on the specific requirements of the die. For example, if the die will perform a drawing operation in the center area of the die, we can program the roller coater to apply more lube in that area, and then lay down a thinner coating of lube on the outer areas of the strip. This is a game-changer for deep-draw work, to help minimize lube consumption while improving die life. The roller coater has far exceeded our expectations and has allowed us to bid on jobs we would have had to pass on before.- John Essenburg, Production Manager: Grant Industries
Until recently, all of Clover Tool’s stamping operations employed spray systems to apply lubricant, “and we sprayed everything―literally, the lubricant went everywhere,” shares Rob Zeni. “As we watched our lube costs continue to escalate over time, including costs related to disposing of spent lube, we decided early in 2018 to take action. We simply no longer could tolerate the added costs, as well as the hazards and added cleaning requirements related to excess lube on our machines, tooling and on the floor…more work for everyone. And, the air quality in the plant was less than ideal.” The solution came in the form of programmable roll-coater systems, Uni-Roller S2 models from Unist installed on 12 presses at the Concord facility (“our biggest runners,” George Zeni says), beginning in late 2018 and wrapping up toward the end of 2019. “Each system,” George explains, “features a programmable fluid controller integrated into the press controls. A key feature for us is the ability to tie the programming for each lube-system setup into the individual job recipe. The ease of setup made the project a good fit for our workplace culture—the operators immediately took ownership of the process change and appreciated the repeatability of the process. And, of course, they really appreciate no longer dealing with excess lube—on the floor, on the dies and, oftentimes, all over themselves.” “One of the most frustrating issues we used to deal with,” adds Rob, “was the constant need to tweak the spray systems, move the heads and adjust the spray pattern. We had individual units at each press with multiple sprayers and no control of the operator’s decision to use too little or too much spray. In addition, the operators sometimes would waste lubricant by not correctly placing the spray heads in their proper locations, regardless of how much training we provided. “With the roll coaters,” he continues, “we’ve eliminated all of the operator chores related to the lube system, which has reduced the time to complete die changeovers by 10 min. on average. Once the coaters are programmed for the individual job, we have absolutely zero adjustments to make.” Another advantage with the roll coaters: they apply lubricant on the top and bottom of the material, most appreciated on tools forming the toughest of materials. “We have a few jobs where our tool coatings take a lot of abuse and when using the spray-lube systems, we were forced to recoat our form tools on a regular basis,” Rob says. “With the new roll coaters, we’ve increased the number of hits between recoating the tools by 50 percent on those jobs. And, with better coating life we’ve seen less burring and die marking on the stamped parts, as well as a reduction in tool adjustments needed to accommodate dimensional issues.” Lastly, customer complaints regarding parts arriving drenched in lube had disappeared, as has most of the fumes from the facility’s weld booths, including more than a dozen robotic-welding cells and more than 20 projection-welding cells. “And, weld porosity is practically nonexistent,” says Rob. Bottom line: the new roll-coater programmable lube systems have reduced lubricant consumption by 41 percent and reduced the cost for disposal by 60 percent. Those factors alone allow George Zeni to forecast a 12- to 18-month return on investment, “not accounting for all of the other benefits,” he says. “We’ve had zero slips since the changeover, the toolmakers and operators appreciate no longer having to deal with lube-soaked tools, there’s much less cleaning required, no more dripping shop rags…the benefits are endless.” Selected portions from "Stamper Says 'So Long' to Lubricant Waste" February 2021 Metalforming Magazine- Rob Zeni, Vice President and Sales Manager: Clover Tool